I want to make this year the most frugal yet. After returning from the seemingly never ending LA Holiday trip sometime around the second week of January I’ve felt more than ever that we definitely need to buckle it down a little bit. Or a lot, actually. Although it was a lot of fun while it lasted, I literally am refusing to even think about how much money we spent. Sometime around the third week I was literally counting days till my return back home, to get back to my schedule and daily routine. Not to mention to get back to my kitchen so I can prep, cook and make coffee. And save money.
During the last two weeks I was busy switching content from the other blog which took a bit more than I expected. As a result, although we are nearing the end of the month, this is my first update on frugal accomplishments this year. In the light of the ‘better late than never’, here we go:
Frugal accomplishments and ways I saved money
Lots of home cooking
I have cooked all (but one) meals at home these past two weeks. All breakfasts, lunches and dinners, no cheating! I sneaked in a few coffees from a deli before I hopped on the M train but that’s all.
The only ‘meal’ that I purchased was pre-planned and accounted for. When I was away I had my colleague V. fill in for me at work. For the entire week she was doing HER work and MY work. Even though this is a standard and required ‘procedure’ at my work, still, I was extremely grateful so I asked her out for the best bagels in SoHo. They were delicious!
Another free basket
I am still ‘cleaning up’ the office after we received all the gift baskets over the holidays. After all the goodies are gone, the baskets usually tend to end up in trash, that is, unless I grab them first. My last treasure turned out to be perfect for storing sunglasses. We have more pairs than we need and they tend to be scattered around the apartment. No more!
What a beauty!
More funds on commuter’s check
I was thrilled to find out in early January that we can increase our pre-tax contributions towards commuter’s check each month. Last year I was putting $130 each month which was enough for my monthly subway card (leaving me with a few dollars left over). Well, this year we can contribute up to $180 each month which is what I will do. I am pretty sure that $50 pre-tax is $38 post tax so it is a $12 savings each month ($144 per year). The additional amount that I am putting away will go towards T.’s subway card.
Do you like getting free month? Yes, me too!
I have not been shopping much online but every time my boss asks me to send flowers or a gift basket to someone I make sure to go through my Ebates
. Well, just before the holidays I purchased a huge gift basket for $200+ for 6 or 7% cash back but the details or cash back never showed in my Ebates account. So I made an effort and spent 2 minutes to email their customer service. They credited me with $11.49! Honestly, I did not see it coming and was thrilled it was so easy!
Other small things and goodies
- Received a $5 Staples rewards coupon
- Resisted checking out ‘clearance’ deals (and trust me there are plenty of these in Manhattan this time of year)
- Hand washed tops that are recommended to be ‘dry cleaned’. They look great after I washed and ironed them myself
- I continue to be the ‘money police’ in my household. I do believe it does help us save more money.
How did YOU save money last week?